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Industry News: Windows 10 – Game Mode Tested In 6 CPU-bound PC Games
Apr 18, 2017

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Windows 10’s Creators Update is now available to everyone. As such, and since it supports the new Game Mode, we decided to put six CPU-bound titles to the test.

Windows 10’s Game Mode currently targets performance enhancements in two ways: a) by increasing overall framerate or peaks and b) by increasing in average framerates or consistency. According to the company, this mode works best when your PC is experiencing resource contention.

This basically means that when your PC is working hard to run your game and possibly other concurrent software, Game Mode can help manage system resources more efficiently and optimize them for gaming.

For testing purposes, we used an Intel i7 4930K (overclocked at 4.2Ghz) with 8GB RAM, NVIDIA’s GTX980Ti, Windows 10 64-bit and the latest WHQL version of the GeForce drivers.

The games we tested were: Styx: Shards of Darkness, Total War: WARHAMMER, Sid Meier’s Civilization VI, Space Hulk: Deathwing, Mafia III and Forza Horizon 3. All games were tested at 1080p on Ultra settings.

For Styx: Shards of Darkness, Mafia III and Space Hulk: Deathwing we tested some heavy CPU scenes. For Forza Horizon 3, we tested tested the train station in Surfer’s Paradise. For Civilization VI and Total War: WARHAMMER we used the built-in benchmarks. Morever, we’ve only included the DX11 results of Total War: WARHAMMER. In DX12 mode, our GPU usage dropped significantly and Game Mode did not improve things at all.

As we’ve already said, the aforementioned games suffer from CPU issues, as all of them rely heavily on one CPU core/thread. Therefore, we thought that these games would benefit, even by small percentages, by this new mode.

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Unfortunately, Game Mode did nothing to improve our overall gaming experience. We should note that Game Mode is still in its early days and may see some future improvements, however those with high-end or mid-end systems that are – for whatever reason – limited by their CPUs will not see, right now, any performance improvements.